We would like to inform all market participants including issuers, member brokers, asset managers, local
and foreign investors, media, the public at large etc. that the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) will resume
trading tomorrow Wednesday 23 March 2011.
There were delays several times in our opening due to unprecedented events that followed Youth
Revolution on 25 January 2011. Since our last communiqué, several changes took place. First and most
importantly there was a newly appointed Prime Minister, Dr. Essam Sharaf, on 3 March 2011 with high
public approval ratings. EGX could not open before the approval from the Prime Minister due to a change
in the executive regulations of the Capital Market Law on 17 February 2011, whereby all non-banking
financial services, including EGX, follow the Prime Minister directly.
Dr. Sharaf appointed a new Minister of Interior and since then security and safety are being restored in
most areas of Egypt and there is negligible presence of the Armed Forces in the streets of Cairo. Also,
there is a noted reduction in the number of employees’ demonstrations regarding salary raises. The
banking sector is operating normally.
During this period, the Chairman of the Egyptian Financial Services Authority, Dr. Ziad Bahaa El Din
resigned and also the Chairman of EGX, Dr. Khaled Serry, resigned but his resignation was only accepted
yesterday. Mr. Mohamed Abdel Salam, the current Chairman of Misr for Central Clearing Depository and
Registry (MCDR), was appointed as Chairman of EGX for the coming six months.
There is cautious optimism due to the recent unprecedented voting on some Articles of the Constitution.
The process went very well in terms of the people turnout 41% (18 million) given that in previous
elections the turnout never exceeded 3%, in addition to the transparency, independence and fairness of the
voting process itself. This is a very important milestone in Egypt’s road towards democracy that was not
witnessed since the last 60 years.
Another important reason for our cautious optimism is the various campaigns on Facebook that were
initiated by the Youth to support the stock market when it opens. A very recent TV campaign started
yesterday and included very prominent and famous figures including the current Prime Minister.
Moreover, various Egyptians Associations abroad have contacted EGX in order to learn the logistics of
investing in the market as several of their members are enthusiastic to invest now in Egypt.
Egypt’s General Prosecutor continued to issue several travel bans against prominent state and
businessmen figures, including some former Ministers, and has frozen their cash, equity and bonds
holdings accounts. A list of these names is always updated on EGX web site.
We acknowledge that the closure of EGX is unprecedented but it was a very critical period due to the
various events impacting Egypt, its security, economy, and industry and capital markets.
In our earlier communiqué, we mentioned that EGX in consultation with the market regulator and the
clearing company will undertake some temporary measures, with the aim of reducing panic when we
resume trading and help restore stability in the capital market. We will also be more diligent in our market
surveillance efforts to ensure that the trades done by offshore funds that are incorporated in less regulated
markets do not involve any banned names by the General Prosecutor since their cash, equity and bonds
holdings are already frozen on the domestic market.
We are confident that despite the expected volatility on the resumption of trading, calmness will be
restored as we proceed. We apologize to our clients for the delay in resuming trading but hope that they
understand the justifiable reasons behind the closure. We indeed have learnt a lot from the recent events,
which will make us much more determined in pursuing our future plans and strategies for EGX.
In conclusion, EGX management is confident that when the Parliamentary and Presidential Elections take
place within six months, Egypt will move forward towards democracy, which will enhance its stability
and our market will of course reflect these positive steps.
We thank you all for your understanding and continued support for the Egyptian capital market.
Mohamed Abdel Salam
EGX and MCDR